Free Standing Lumber Rack

  • Advertise with us
Project by Jeremy Greiner posted 07-24-2012 11:14 PM 8652 views 9 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My Dad came down to visit this past weekend which was a great visit. He helped me finish my lumber rack which alone would have most likely taken me another weekend or 2 .. but we knocked it out on a Saturday afternoon and got my shop way more organized. Doing projects and such with my Dad always feels good I think there is always a bonding that happens when 2 people work together on a project, and I always like working with my Dad on these sort of things. I will say sometimes I miss not living in the same state because I would imagine we would do these sort of things a lot more often.

The lumber rack itself is built to hold half sheets of plywood (4’ by 4’). For the most part, full sheets are very difficult for me to work with so I figured most of the time I’d get any sheet goods I would store I’d get cut in half at the source. Any project that would require larger plywood I’d get the plywood and cut it down with a circular saw specifically for that project anyways so I didn’t feel a need to store larger pieces. I like the idea of storing the sheet goods flat instead of vertically I think it will help keep the goods flat and prevent warping to some extent.

The top portion is designed to hold rough/milled lumber of 5 and a half feet (though it could hold longer it would just stick out more on 1 side or the other I just wouldn’t want to hold 8 foot long 2×4’s or whatever on this thing. And really it’s all the same principle of the plywood. I have to get materials cut down to fit into my mini, and even beyond that I have trouble working with material much longer than 5’ so really if I need to for a specific project, I would get the wood as needed and work with it immediately and it wouldn’t be stored really.

The entire thing is made out of southern yellow pine 2×10’s that I milled down into 1 1/4’’ x 2 1/2’’ boards. this allowed me to glue together 2 of them for a 2 1/2’’ x 2 1/2’’ beam or stud for the top wood rack. The studs are glued and screwed together. I used pocket screws on both sides of the stud for a total of 4 screws per side, this produced a very strong bond that I have no doubt will hold up. I felt pocket screws would work better since I’m screwing down into the face grain of the top or bottom instead of screwing through the top and bottom into the end grain of the stud.

The plywood storage is a frame built out of the same material using half lap joints to connect it all together (seen in picture 6) with OSB bran nailed onto the top. I then used small spacers between each layer and I tried to get the spacers to land in the same area as the cross boards but that didn’t always work, but it’s pretty sturdy I may add some extra support later if I notice any issues.

I used 3/4’’ conduit that are wrapped with 3/4’’ pipe insulation. The conduit was recommended by a fellow lumberjock member as plenty strong enough and considering the massive savings over galvanized pipe I decided to give it a try. With the rack loaded I notice no sag in the conduit, though I have a lot more room to load up I don’t expect any issues at all.

The idea is to keep lesser used woods, or woods that I’m letting dry or acclimate in the back for long term storage, while wood I use often or may cycle through regularly are loaded on the front rack for easy access.

I’m very happy with this project and it freed up a lot of space in my garage and should last me a long time. If anyone is interested in building something similar let me know I’d be happy to answer any questions.


-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer:

6 comments so far

View Chris's profile


339 posts in 3924 days

#1 posted 07-25-2012 01:21 AM

Looks like a great rack, Jer. I’m working on one myself to clear up some space in the shop, hope it comes out as good as yours looks.
It’s great that you can work with your Dad, treasure that for as long as you can.
I see you’re a SW developer; I was one myself before the lobotomy and management – working with wood and your hands is a really great way to get yourself some mental breathing room.

Thanks for posting!

-- Chris

View JL7's profile


8761 posts in 3531 days

#2 posted 07-25-2012 02:44 AM

Hey Jeremy – good story – looks useful and STURDY!

-- Jeff .... Minnesota, USA

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


16261 posts in 3185 days

#3 posted 07-25-2012 05:19 AM

Great idea, using conduit. Also like the combination of sheet goods and lumber storage in the same footprint.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View Ken90712's profile


17798 posts in 3755 days

#4 posted 07-25-2012 08:18 AM

Jeremy, I’m in the same boat as you. My dad live in Michigan and were in California. He is an amazing woodworker and anytime I get to work with him on anything its always special.

Great job on the Lumber Rack. Should help with storage.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View hjt's profile


904 posts in 3704 days

#5 posted 07-27-2012 01:47 AM

Jeremy – great story. glad that you got to work with your dad. Man, the project looks great. You come up with so many great designs. Did you use sketch-up on this?

-- Harold

View Jeremy Greiner's profile

Jeremy Greiner

568 posts in 3338 days

#6 posted 07-27-2012 02:56 AM

I did use sketchup, though some things changed on the fly because of the kreg pocket hole jig that turned out to be very useful on this. I usually try to do everything in sketchup first :)

-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer:

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics